by Asif Ali
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  • 4 cups cold water
  • 3 tablespoon kashmiri tea leaves
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • ⅓ teaspoon salt
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 inch piece of cinnamon
  • 3 cloves
  • 5 green cardamons
  • 2 cups ice-cold water


  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 cup kehwa
  • 1-2 tablespoon sugar optional
  • crushed almonds & pistachios for garnish


  • In a large sauce add the water along with kashmiri tea, star anise, cinnamon, cloves and green cardamom. Bring everything to a boil.
  • When the boil comes add baking soda and salt. Lower the heat slightly and keep cooking till the water is reduced to half the initial amount which is 2 cups according to this recipe.
  • When the water is reduced add ice-cold water along with some ice cubes from a height. Then aerate the mixture by using a ladle or another mug and pour around a cup of this tea from a height and keep doing that for the next 10 mins. It translates to ‘phaintna’ in Urdu which means to beat vigorously.
  • After 10 mins you will start to see deep red bubbles on the surface of the tea. Turn off the heat and strain the liquid. This ‘kehwa’ can be stored in the fridge for around 2 weeks.
  • For preparing the milk tea, bring the milk to a boil in a saucepan. Add the sugar and pour some of the kehwa. You can adjust the kehwa and milk ratio according to your taste. Bring the mixture to a boil and turn off the heat. Cover the pan and give ‘dam’ for 2-3 mins.
  • Pour in the serving cups and add garnish with some crushed almonds and pistachios.


  • The kehwa prepared in this recipe makes around 5-6 cups of Kashmiri Chai. The leftover kehwa can be store in the fridge for 2 weeks.

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